Sunday, April 30, 2006
My Fellow Duranies...
All the talk of Duran Duran has made me nostalgic. I loved those dudes! I was gonna marry Roger Taylor (the drummer). I even wrote about it in one of my early, wonderful, lovely novels (changed my name to something more exotic, though). Wrote those "novels" in school notebooks, and in the 9th grade it literally got passed around the whole school. I had people I didn't even know (female Duran fans of course) coming up to me and telling me how good it was. HAH! Those things were total crap.
The title of said novel (spread out in multiple notebooks - I didn't know how to make a story end back then cos I didn't want to!)? Um, it was: ? Otherwise known as Question Mark. Which goes to show I wasn't any good at titles then, and I'm not much better now!
Anyway, I bought all the magazines, albums (vinyl back then baby, and including the special imported remixes), books - everything. Even went and saw them live in Feb. of 84, Power Station in July of 85 (with John and Andy Taylor), and Duran Duran again in summer of 93. I wanted to see them last year but the seats sucked and the tickets were like $70! My friend and I (she's a former Duranie too - she wanted to marry Nick Rhodes - I think she liked his makeup) decided against it. We were fans but not that big of fans ~ anymore.
Wanna hear something weird? First marriage was to a drummer. Second marriage, my husband shares a birthday with . . . Roger Taylor! I AM not KIDDING! So I think I was always searching for Roger, I just didn't know it.
By the way, I have a lot of their music on my iPod, and I'm not ashamed to say it.
Here's a new pic of them by the way. John looks bad! Everybody else looks ok . . .
Friday, April 28, 2006
When you write, do you need peace and quiet or do you like to listen to music? I'm on both sides of the fence. Sometimes, I need quiet, sometimes I don't have that option and I write amongst cartoons blaring and children running around like banshees.
Other times, I get in these weird creative moods where I need music. And then something strange happens and the lyrics start talking to me. And I listen to the same damn song over and over and over again. It's embarrassing cos your iPod tells you how many times you listen to a song - yes, it keeps count. And when you realize you've listened to a specific song over 50 times, you kinda feel like a fool. But the song is talking to me. I can't help it.
Here's an excerpt from Jane's Addiction's song "Jane Says." My heroine just happens to be named Janie - and this part right here is her. The song inspired me before I actually came up with the character:
Jane says I've never been in love
I don't know what it is
She only knows if someone wants her
I want them if they want me
I only know they want me
She gets mad And she starts to cry
She takes a swing man
She cant hit!
She don't mean no harm
She just dont know
What else to do about it
Poor Janie. She's a mess.
On a side note, if Julie S is not going to write the rock star flashing in the window story, I'm thinking I'm gonna do it. And I'm going to model my hero after Dave Navarro from -- Jane's Addiction! You know, the freaky dude who's married to Carmen Electra? Well, I watched that show on MTV that followed their wedding, and he was so sweet and so into her. Soft spoken, intelligent. And he looks like some freaky crazy rocker dude, but take away the black nail polish, the excessive tatoos and the black eyeliner and he's pretty good looking. Well, maybe keep the black eyeliner cos he looks good with sultry eyes.
Uh, I can't believe I just said that.
Thursday, April 27, 2006
So I've been killing time, doing mindless crap on the laptop, anything to keep me from working on a sex scene that needs to be written.
I mean, come on, I want to be a romance writer, I should LOVE writing sex scenes right? Well, they should at least be EASY to write.
I gotta find a rhythm when writing a sex scene, gotta have uninterrupted time to write it and let's just face it, I have to be in the mood. Isn't that funny, it sounds a lot like...having sex!
But I digress. So in my process of killing time, I decided to open up the wip that I wrote during NaNo in Nov. A blitz of a 55,000 word wip that I completed in a month. I wanted to revisit the story, knowing it's a story that I'll never publish, and maybe I could crib some good ideas, scenes, words, whatever from it.
Here's the Confession Part 1 - I used the same characters that I'm working with right now. Oh, there's a lot of differences, but basically it's the same two. I love these two, I want their story told, and when I gave up on the NaNo, I just tweaked them (a lot) and started the current wip. I've never done this before, but with these two, I just had to.
Confession Part 2 - My 55,000 blitz of a wip is not bad. It's the virgin hero story I gave up on. There's some great stuff in there. I'm not trying to brag, but my subplot is fab. The hero's best friend and the heroine's sister get together, complete polar opposites and they are funny. I was writing this for HQ Blaze, so I still would've had 20,000 words to go on the sucker. But I finished it in a sense, I wrote the final scene and I had a plan for the rest. It was a matter of going back and adding a few more scenes to the subplot mostly and a lot of layering.
So why did I give up on this thing? I think I suffered from "I stinkitis." (Who made that up, anyway? I read it somewhere and I loved it cos I have this ailment quite often). I thought it sucked. I thought no one would be interested in a virgin hero. I thought there wasn't enough conflict.
I think I was wrong. There's so much internal conflict with these two it's crazy. And the creative ways they come up with to avoid losing his virginity. My, my I wrote a trifle hot back in Nov.What am I going to do with this thing? I have no idea, cos all of a sudden, I don't want to give up on it. But there's going to be a lot of work. I need to change the plot quite a bit (there's a few overlapping things between the two wips and one unrealistic part that I would want to chuck altogether), change the characters (can't have two stories with the same names - that's just plain stupid). Oh, it sounds like a nightmare.
It's been so long since I gave it a complete read through, and when I got close to the end, the "black moment," I guess you would call it, I cried. I don't think I've ever done that with anything I've written before!
I should've never opened up the thing - it was like opening up a new can of worms to worry about, when I already have one I'm worrying about right now.
Wednesday, April 26, 2006
Almost forgot to share the latest image of Mr. Hotness. He posted this on his myspace. See why I sent him a message?
Though I'm going to sound like a mother here and tell him he needs to iron his shirt!
That's me. I'm overwhelmed and touched at the fact that I'm Julie Cohen's idol and she's sending more books to her hunky hero inspirations. That she wrote an entire blog about me and what I inspired her to do. What's so funny is that she's the one who encouraged me to write to my hero inspiration, after she shared her letter to John Cusack. So I guess we've helped each other out with this! I wish her luck and I hope that they respond.
And I'm barreling down the home stretch with my wip. It's coming along quite nicely. I can see the light at the end of the tunnel, and it's getting brighter and brighter.
How's everyone else's writing progress? Fast and furious, slow or no go? In revision hell (I know some of you are)? Share. Share the agony and the ecstasy!
Tuesday, April 25, 2006
You won't believe this 'cos I can't believe it myself.
I was on myspace yesterday, minding my own business. Went into my friends list and saw that the inspiration for my hero, Kaysar from Big Brother, was online (yep, he's one of my "friends" but I've never talked to the dude. He's got like 4500 friends!). So I thought to myself, "Should I? Should I send him a message and tell him he's the model for my hero? Huh huh huh?"
Well, I did. I sent him a rather mysterious message saying he would die of embarrassment of what he inspired me to do, but I wouldn't tell him what it was.
He responded back immediately, asking me to tell him.
I couldn't believe it. Mr. Reality TV Star responde to little ol' me? Miss Wannabe Author who's writing a "dirty" novel with him in mind? No way! I figured he would ignore my message. The guy probably gets a bazillion dumb messages a day (he has a huge fan base - the ladies love him).
So I told him. I told him I'm an aspiring author, I'm almost finished with a book and he's the inspiration behind the hero.
And this is what he wrote back this morning:
"Thats awesome. Thanks for sharing. You made my day!!!! I hope your story gets published because I want a copy. "
Isn't that just the coolest? I wrote him back telling him he made MY day. Which he did.
On a side note, my day was made brighter yesterday by the fact that I also finally received my April copies of the Modern Extra books and my Alphasmart finally came in! That thing is so light - and so cool! Once I'm finished with my current wip, I'm going to work on the next one and use the Alpha (yes, I already have another story idea brewing!).
Monday, April 24, 2006
I gave myself a goal this weekend of getting my word count to 45,000. And yahoo I did it! I am now 75% of the way through my wip!
Which excites me and frightens me all at the same time. Here's how I feel - Yea, it's almost done! And - It's almost done????? Oh crap!
It's exciting to be almost finished. This will be the first manuscript I've completed that I like (uh, the real first ms I completed is a real disjointed piece of you know what but we don't need to talk about it), so I'm proud of that achievement. But on the flip side, now I have to go back and layer in some stuff, edit the crap, etc. and then submit it.
And then once it's submitted I have to sit around and wait and wait and wait and hope they won't send me a R. And if I do get the dreaded R, then I hope it's at least one with comments on how to improve.
See how my brain is working? I'm already jumping to the R I'm going to receive and I haven't even completed it yet! I think I just need to take one step at a time and deal with that stuff later.
So I gotta go finish writing a love scene. My two were just about to have a little "Love in a Elevator" (think Aerosmith) but they got interrupted. They've now moved on to a balcony. Whoo-hoo!
Sunday, April 23, 2006
It won't stop raining.
Oh, yes, I live in glamourous California, where it's always supposed to be sunny and warm and beautiful.
This year, that theory has been thrown out the window - landing on the wet and soggy ground.
As I type, it's pouring down. I can see it land in my pool (sniff, sniff - the pool I feel we're never going to be able to use cos it WON'T STOP RAINING). It's been raining all weekend. This past week was beautiful - sunny and around 75-80 degrees. Friday night, a thunder/lightning storm blew in and the hits just keep on a comin'.
I'm not one to gripe about rain. Usually, we don't get enough and we suffer through drought, fires, etc. Last year was a wet one. Couldn't believe how much it rained. This year has topped it. Big time.
Come on Mother Nature! I don't want 100 degree weather tomorrow, cos that'll be here soon enough (yuck). Just give us some sun. Spare our overflowing water ways and give it up! Of course, when the warm weather comes back, the snow melts and the overflowing water ways overflow even more. I feel like right now, it's a no win situation.
Ok enough of my griping. I had to get that off my chest. It's just too damn depressing, this rain. Make it stop! Please!
Hope y'all had a nice and DRY weekend!
Friday, April 21, 2006
To be honest, Fridays aren't that big a deal to me. I stay at home now, so I never get to leave my job (which is a bummer), my husband's days off are Wed. & Thurs. so our Fri. night is really Tues. But that doesn't matter anyway cos he gets NO days off the rest of the month! He only got 3 days off total! He works for slaves drivers. But that's a whole other story.
So I've decided I have ADD. When it comes to reading books. I kid you not I can have 4-5 different books going at the same time, which is ridiculous. Right now I have three going: The new Plum Sykes book I mentioned yesterday, the Donald Maass book and workbook (does that count as a total of 4 then?) and Tori Carrington's new Blaze, Obsession. All three are completely different, and all three are very good.
Does anybody else read more than one book at a time? Do you wonder if you're a little nuts for doing it? Or do you think it's completely normal? I know I'm not completely normal, but I thought I would just check in with the rest of ya.
Thursday, April 20, 2006
Something to Say
I'll make this quick.
Donald Maass is a genius.
Love his book Writing the Breakout Novel. And I'm getting into the workbook right now. So much information to make your writing richer, deeper - and just better! I'm loving it ALL!
Ok, I had to say that.
Can you believe it? I don't really know what to talk about! If you want to hear it, I'll ramble about my day yesterday. If you don't want to hear it, stop reading now.
Took my youngest to the doctor - he had to get shots, which wasn't fun. Then we went to Target and spent too much money, and I bought the new Plum Sykes book The Debutante Divorcee (her 1st novel Bergdorf Blondes was pretty funny), so that was cool.
Then I let the kids play outside but baby boy was tired from lack of real nap and shots, so we went inside and they watched a new movie, some crazy Barbie movie that creeps me out. The animation is weird, I can't put my finger on it, but it's creepy.
Read my latest copy of The Romantic Times Bookclub magazine. I like to read the reviews, especially the bad ones. Not because I get a thrill out of someone getting a bad review (cos I don't - if that happened to me I would be devastated) but cos I like to see what the reviewer found wrong w/ the story. "Lack of plot," "no chemistry," "hated the heroine," etc. helps me see what they're looking for. Of course, every reviewer is different but still. Plus, I like to see what's out there, the creative plots, the fun titles. The titles of these books are so great! Makes me want to read them just because of that.
Put baby boy to bed by 5:30 (wow!) and had dinner with daughter. Then she took a half hour shower (I had to force her out - she's 3 and a shower hog) and her daddy made it home before she went to bed so she was thrilled.
Watched a little TV, wrote about 1,000 words and was in bed by 10:30. Also caught a mouse. I live in the country, our house is only 5 years old, but already the mice have found holes and they sneak in, esp when it's cold. My husband noticed the cats hanging out around the refrigerator so I set out a sticky trap and in a couple of hours - caught! My cats are worthless. They'll kill everything outside but rarely inside. Losers.
And that's it. Isn't that exciting? Not going anywhere today so it ought to be a VERY exciting day.
By the way, I had to email Mills & Boon about my NOT receiving the April Mod X's and they had to resend them out to me. So now I wait again. Isn't that depressing? Come May 1st I'm ordering the May & June together so I'll have 4 more coming to me. Yipee!!
Ok, so I rambled. Sorry. Maybe I"ll have something more profound to say next time. Adios!
Wednesday, April 19, 2006
Ok, I'm a dork. And I'm definitely not into country so much, but I had to find a way to show my excitement somehow.
I had a breakthrough yesterday. I don't even know exactly what triggered it, but I wrote a little over 2,000 words. Do you know how good that feels? I know most of you do. I feel like a heavy weight has been lifted from my shoulders - it's name is Writer's Block and I think it took a hike.
I've read that there's no such thing as Writer's Block, that it's something we do to ourselves, etc, etc. Well, I believe it is something we do to ourselves, but I'm still callin' it what I think it should be called. Cos it is definitely a block we put in our minds that we can't seem to get past, and let me tell you, it frustrates the hell out of me.
And it wasn't like I didn't know where to go next. I have a pretty thorough outline, a good grasp on my characters, a lot to work with. I guess I just didn't know how to do it. I needed to push through.
In my cruising of various blogs (see yesterday for that), I discovered a lot of us were going through the same thing and just at this moment I've had a relevation. I think we all have Spring Fever. Don't you remember being in school and not wanting to do your homework, not even wanting to be in the building? You just wanted to go outside and do something, you didn't care what it was. Anything was fun on a warm spring day.
So instead of keeping myself inside, forcing myself to write, I've been going out with the kids for a while, then I come back in and write like a fiend. And I think it's helping.
I hope those who are in a slump are out or almost out. I feel good, though I know this won't last. Cos once I'm done, then I need to go back and edit, revise, layer in stuff - oh, what a process.
The joys of writing, let me tell ya!
Tuesday, April 18, 2006
Yep, got a bad case. Not necessarily of my own blog. I like blogging, I find I blog about 5 days a week but it really doesn't take long to do it. It's fun, and a way for me to write and share w/ my friends, mostly my writer friends.
Nope, I'm talking about blog cruising. Just recently I've started doing it A LOT.
I'm all over the damn place. Now, the blogs I'm cruising are mostly writer-types. Favorite authors ('oh, she's got one too??? Yea!' is my normal reaction), new authors, author/friends, aspiring authors, aspiring author friends, romance group blogs -- the list goes on and on.
I read a lot of great stuff on them. Funny bits, pics of hot dudes, advice, great discussions, things that make me think...and sometimes struggles, heartbreak, frustration. All things I can relate to at one point or another.
Anybody else out there blog cruisers? Care to share any favorites? I have a lot of them I read (and I need to create more links to them on my page) but a particular favorite right now is Jill Shalvis (I have her link in the list) - she is hilarious. She can take a family situation and make it sooo funny. And she writes a pretty good book too.
So share your favorite blogs! I would love to hear about them.
Monday, April 17, 2006
A Brand New Day
That's what I'm telling myself. I need to get motivated. I've let every possible distraction distract me. I need to stop. I did some edits on the first two chapters Saturday night, but other than that, I've written nada. Zip. Zilch. I need to get a move on!
My Easter was nice, though it rained. Luckily enough, we did the egg hunt for the kids before the rain started. My husband's family came and we had good food and good conversation. The kids had a great time and were on a complete sugar high. And that evening my husband and I had a good night bonding over a television show.
He's a manager at an RV dealership, and there's this new show on A&E called "King of Cars." Well, even though it deals w/ cars vs. RVs, it's still a dealership and what they show is so like where my husband works (and where I used to work), it's interesting. A lot more enthusiasm on the TV show. Which my husband finds inspiring. Now, just to let everyone know, my husband isn't some cheesy salesman (though they're down there, let me tell ya), but he's really good at his job. But sometimes he gets discouraged, like we all do, and he needs a little inspiration. I'm glad to see he's getting it from the King of Cars.
Ok, I totally diverted but that's all right. I'm allowed to ramble. I'm in a rambling mood, I guess. I have to admit, it's still early and I snuck a few pieces of Easter candy. Maybe I'm on a sugar high.
Think it'll help me write? Wouldn't that be nice!
Friday, April 14, 2006
Oh, gosh, I am so so stuck. And it's so so annoying. (And by the way it's raining so so hard but that's beside the point).
Anyway, I've stalled on my wip. And it irritates me. My husband was watching the kids and I thought "Ok, I'll write, I haven't written in --don't want to mention how many-- days." Didn't happen. I did do some research, very helpful research regarding my hero, his profession, a last name for him (can you believe I didn't have a last name for him???). Glad it's done, it needed to be done.
So I thought that might inspire me a little bit, make me want to get back at it.
I decided to blog about it instead. Here I am, stumped. I think I'm gonna go watch America's Next Top Model on the TiVo. Maybe that will inspire me. Yeah right!
Everyone have a good Easter!
Thursday, April 13, 2006
All right, all right. I'm posting a couple of pictures of the guy who inspired me to create my hero. Here he is:
Yeah! My hero is based on a reality TV star! How lame is that? But look at him - he's hot! Dark curly hair, smoldering eyes, nice bod. I wouldn't toss him out of bed for eating crackers.
Kaysar from Big Brother 6. Made that show worth watching. Supposedly Big Brother 7 is an All Stars with America able to choose who goes into the house. I'm hoping he'll make a comeback. Make another summer of watching BB worth it.
Now I need to go write something. Cos yet again I didn't write one word yesterday. Shame on me!
Wednesday, April 12, 2006
So...vacationing with two small children is not much fun. Actually, my daughter, whose 3, was fine. She was so glad to be spending time with her grandma, loved holding her new cousin, generally had a great time. My 12 year old got a little bored, but had a great time with his uncle (his idol) and got some new stuff. My 18 month old - did NOT have a good time. At all. Missed his routine, his house, his naps, his bed. Very, very difficult. You should have seen the smile on his face when we came home! He smiled all night long. Poor guy. Change is hard.
I haven't written a word in - ssh, don't tell - five days!!! Oh my gosh!!!! I really need to get cracking. I brought my laptop but never cracked it open. Just never got around to it. So this week, I need to write. A lot. I've missed my characters. They've been talking to me the last couple of days, asking me when am I going to get back at it. I told them to hold their horses, give me some time. But they're getting really impatient. They remind me of my children.
So have any of you paused on the writing 'cos of life and then felt guilty? Had your characters talking to you, making you feel even more guilty? I'm pretty sure you all have...
Friday, April 07, 2006
Vacation all I ever wanted
Vacation have to get away
Vacation meant to be spent alone...
Oops. Hear the needle scratch across the record. Oh - that doesn't happen anymore 'cos we listen to CDs. My bad.
Thought I'd quote an old Go Go's song (I'm not sure if I got the words right but that's what I heard when I was 12) in honor of my mini vacation to my parents' house. But alas, I'm not spending my vacation alone. I'm spending it with my three children, my parents, their 2 dogs and 2 cats. My husband is working in Florida - he called me last night to say that he went swimming in the ocean, in the hotel pool and ate at Bubba Gump's. What a jerk.
I'm gonna see my new niece on Sunday. She's almost a month old! Can't wait to hold her. I'll see my grandma, some of my friends, and deal with the rain. Yep, it's supposed to rain this weekend. Again. Which is such a bummer cos it's so nice today. I CANNOT WAIT for this RAINING STREAK to be OVER!
So I'm leaving in a few hours for a five hour drive up north. Wish me luck that I don't get stuck in rush hour traffic in Sacramento and that my children behave.
Have a great weekend everyone!
Thursday, April 06, 2006
Too Much Writing
I know, I know it sounds ridiculous, but I've done it. I've wrote too much.
I went on a bender yesterday. Just wrote like a fool. Wanted to push over the 30,000 mark so I could think "I'm half way done." And I did it. I not only pushed past 30,000, I made it all the way to 32 plus. I should be thrilled, especially because I'm going out of town for the weekend and won't get a chance to write at all.
And yeah, I'm thrilled, but I'm also tired. At one in the morning I had two kids sitting on my bed, wide awake. One of them crying for Daddy (he's out of town for work) and one just happy to be bouncing on my bed. I wasn't too thrilled about all of this.
Besides, my carpal tunnel is hurtin' like nobody's business. All those years of working in a office, typing away like a mad woman did damage to my wrists, and right now they're killing me. Ibuprofin has become my best friend. No fun.
So I'm thinking maybe this little vacation to go visit family and finally meet my new niece is necessary. I need to relax and more than anything, I need to rest my wrists. Especially my left one (I'm a lefty) - it hurts!
Ok, enough of my whining. Anybody else get aches and pains when they write? All hunched over your desk, laptop, whatever? I can imagine all the ailments. Fill me in on yours! Let's moan and complain together.
Wednesday, April 05, 2006
I Have a Girl-Crush on my Heroine
Since I talked about my hero yesterday, I thought I'd talk about my heroine today...
She's gone on a long journey to get where she is, and she's not particularly happy with the journey she made. She feels like she followed the roadmap her mother laid out for her, rather than her own. And so at the beginning of this story, she's finally put her foot down and done something for herself. Without worrying about other people's opinions or the consequences of her actions. Which, of course, puts her in a situation that she's not too happy about at first, but c'mon, she's with my delicious hero so she can't complain too loudly, right?
Well, she does. Even though she's attracted to him, he makes her a little nuts. She's just as stubborn as he is, though, and they certainly give each other a run for their money.
I like the fact that she says what we all want to say, that she's not going to let anyone bring her down anymore, and that she wants to better herself. And even with all of this big talk of independence and being strong, she still has a soft side, a vulnerable side that she can't help but show to the hero. And when he sees it, it softens him, and allows him to show his vulnerable side as well. But as soon as these two realize their guards are down they're all about putting them back up again as fast as they can.
What a bunch of dolts.
But eventually they're gonna figure this thing out and live happily ever after. And I've been writing furiously to get to that point, feeling both ready to enjoy it and sad that it's going to have to end. These two are taking me on a fun ride!
I hope someday they can take everybody else on a fun ride too!
Tuesday, April 04, 2006
I'm in Love with my Hero
Sigh...he's dreamy. And a little tortured. And he doesn't trust women. And he's been hurt by his family, which makes him mad. And it also hurts his feelings. And he doesn't trust my heroine - he just lumps her in with all of the rest, and on the surface, it looks as if she's like all the rest. But of course she's really not.
I fall for all of my heroes. It's easy, since I'm creating the dream man. I can mold and tweak him just how I want until he turns into the perfect hero. Not that he's perfect, because if he was, how uninteresting would that be? No, my current hero is stubborn, a little bossy, a lot controlling. He just doesn't get why he has all of these crazy feelings for the heroine. It confuses him, which is so great.
And did I mention how handsome he is? He's hot, dark haired and dark eyes. Smoldering eyes. And a smile with dimples that slays the heroine every time he flashes it, which is not often enough for her taste.
I'll be sad when I'm done with these two, because they are by far my favorites. Anybody else feel that way? Anybody else fall in love with their heroes? I know you're out there!
Monday, April 03, 2006
I've only been blogging for a month and I'm loving it 'cos I've made more writer friends.
I don't know about y'all, but I don't talk about my writing much with my "regular" friends. They just don't seem to understand so much, though they're always encouraging. I guess it's because they don't have characters talking in their heads, telling them what to do. And it can be embarrassing sometimes to tell people that you're writing steamy romances. They look at you strangely (especially men) and then rib your husband, asking if I'm sharing any bedroom secrets. And you should see the look on my husband's face when they say that!
But writer friends are different. They understand. When you talk about having trouble with internal conflict or characterization, they nod their heads in agreement and say I know what you mean. It's just plain nice to have people to relate with, to talk about different writing techniques, whatever.
And my blog has helped me meet even more! I've also met some nice people on the eharlequin boards, and I met my critique partner at the RWA conference last year, which was pure luck that we even crossed paths (the last day, in line for lunch). I don't have a local RWA chapter close to me, which makes me sad, but meeting everyone online is the next best thing.
So how about everyone else? Are you looking to widen your circle of writer friends? Do you already have a solid support group of writer friends? Too many writer friends? Do you have NO writer friends?
I'll be your writer friend.